This is being written to encourage voters in Washington State’s 49th Legislative District to immediately do all they can to have their voices heard about who they want to represent them in Olympia for the balance of 2011 and 2012. According to articles in The Columbian, the 49th District Democratic Central Committee is on the verge of making this selection and they plan to take this action by the early afternoon of Wednesday, April 13th … about 16 hours from now.
I had hoped to provide some depth of information on the seven applicants for appointment to replace resigned Rep. Jim Jacks, to give voters in the 49th District an opportunity to express their preferences on this to the 49th District Democratic Central Committee. However, in a meeting on Monday, April 11th, the Democrat group narrowed the field of applicants to three and stated their intention to make a final selection by noon tomorrow and to have their selected applicant sworn in by 12:15 p.m. With that being the case, the best I’m in a position to do is to provide some observations about the three final candidates, to encourage voters to do what they can to add information to what I can offer and to express their related views to the 49th District Democratic Central Committee.
Applicant #1 – Sharon Wylie, 61, is reported as a “former legislative lobbyist”. According to The Columbian, she has declared herself “an environmentalist and a huge fan of light rail.” Of course, most folks who love the Pacific Northwest could be considered environmentalists but voters should consider if Wylie’s definition adds up to her just being another Liberal fan of the government over-regulation that continues to stifle the economy of the Pacific Northwest. And, considering that Clark County voters have consistently rejected light rail, voters should consider how her pro-light-rail stance lines up with their no-light-rail stance. In describing her experience and qualifications, Wylie noted her two terms in the Oregon Legislature in the 1990s and working as a legislative lobbyist for eight years, beginning in 1998. Although she references other work, as a consultant, it’s hard to find any experience that Wylie has that doesn’t fall under “Public Sector.” With that in mind, voters should consider what real-world experience Wylie has that would help her connect with them, in order to accurately represent them.
Applicant #2 – Temple Lentz, 35, who is touted as Campaign Manager for Tim Leavitt, in his successful run for Mayor of Vancouver in 2009. Since many in Vancouver view Tim Leavitt as the Candidate who opposed tolls for funding the CRC Project (a key to his successful run), who flipped to favoring tolls after he was elected; voters should consider whether they can rely on Lentz to say what she means and to mean what she says. Also, on the subject of “tolls for funding the CRC Project”, it should be noted that it was Lentz and her Husband who filed a PDC complaint against David Madore and NoTolls.com. The PDC determined that complaint to be without basis. In addressing the 49th District Democratic Central Committee, Lentz vowed to “advocate for the Columbia River Crossing.” Considering her attempt to smear Madore, it seems she’s won’t let ethics or the will of the people get in the way of her advocacy. Lentz also stated that “the 49th District is the last progressive stronghold in Clark County.” I can only guess at how to define Lentz’s statement but, at least, it makes her sound like someone determined to legislate towards her perspective of “progressive” and to not particularly be concerned with the views of her constituency. Additionally, Lentz promised to “fight for women’s right to make decisions about their bodies.” Of course, that is code for favoring wholesale abortion in lieu of sexual responsibility. Obviously, individual voters can determine how this stance lines up with their own. Furthermore, Lentz also promised to favor Labor over “the rich.” Voters who are employers, using their wealth to create jobs in the 49th District, as well as voters who are employed by these “rich” employers, should give this serious consideration. Finally, it’s also hard to find any experience that Lentz has that doesn’t fall under “Public Sector.” With that in mind, much the same as with Wylie, voters should consider what real-world experience Lentz has that would help her connect with them, in order to accurately represent them.
Applicant #3 – Jeremy Zegas, 28, State Senator Craig Pridemore’s Legislative Assistant. Zegas noted that he has worked on four political campaigns. In fact, Zegas stated that “All I’ve done in Vancouver is campaign” since moving here in 2008. Beyond this, I can’t tell you much about Jeremy Zegas. Pretty obviously, what I’ve said about Wylie and Lentz also applies to Zegas – i.e. It’s hard to find any experience that Zegas has that doesn’t fall under “Public Sector.” With that in mind, voters should consider what real-world experience Zegas has that would help him connect with them, in order to accurately represent them.
In closing, I want to share that in looking at this situation and this field of applicants, I’ve been reminded of the old TV show "Let’s Make A Deal." If you’ll remember, that show featured Monty Hall getting audience contestants to choose a prize from behind Door #1 or Door #2 or Door #3. Typically, the prize packages were made up of a nice prize behind one door, a very nice prize behind another door and a booby-prize behind the remaining door. A Contestant was said to have been “Zonked” if they selected the door with the booby-prize. My concern for the present status of the process to make the appointment to replace resigned Rep. Jim Jacks is that it seems highly likely that there is a booby-prize behind all three doors in this metaphorical game of Let’s Make A Deal and the result will be the voters of Washington State’s 49th Legislative District getting thoroughly Zonked (of course you can fill in your own euphemism here) through 2012. Apparently, I’m not the only one with this concern. State Rep. Jim Moeller (D), who occupies the other position in the 49th District, urged a more deliberative process than the one being taken by the 49th District Democratic Central Committee. Moeller and I see eye-to-eye on very little but we do agree on this one.
Submitted by Rab L Rouser (not verified) on Tue, 2011-04-12 20:26.
+-Since the voters of the 49th district were foolish enough to elect Jim Jacks they deserve whichever big-spending liberal the Communist Party selects on their behalf.
It's Door #1
Submitted by Gary Wiram on Wed, 2011-04-13 17:43.
+-Well, the 49th District Democratic Central Committee submitted their three finalist to the Clark County Commissioners and, they appointed Sharon Wylie. You can read the specifics in The Columbian's report on this: http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/apr/13/jim-jacks-replacement-be-announced-today-noon/. Hopefully, for the sake of voters in the 49th, I was wrong about there being a booby-prize behind every door in this deal. I doubt it but time will tell
Submitted by Chad Minnick on Mon, 2011-04-18 13:30.
+-The County Commissioners were the ones responsible for actually appointing legislator, from among the Party's three finalists. Why didn't the Commissioners, which has a 2-1 GOP to Democrat majority, take more time and consider the candidates more carefully?
It looked to us on the outside like the Republican County Commissioners simply rubber-stamped the local Democrat party's decision rather than doing their Constitutional duty of making the best possible choice. So now we have professional lobbyist from Oregon?